Knowing Jesus Through The Old Testament
by Christopher J H Wright
Have you wondered what Jesus said when he walked on the Emmaus road with the two disappointed disciples? We are told that Jesus, starting from Moses and all the prophets, gave them a heart-warming Bible study of all the things that concerned himself. For Jesus, the Old Testament was his Bible and he knew it very well.
Christopher Wright has served us magnificently in this outstanding book. I have personally so enjoyed reading it and feel that my grasp of the person of our Lord Jesus Christ has been strengthened as a result.
The author makes it clear that our understanding of Jesus can only be properly grounded by a full grasp of the Old Testament background to his coming. Jesus is the fulfilment of not only isolated prophetic promises but indeed the fulfilment of the whole purpose of the existence of the nation of Israel. You will be so enriched to consider Jesus, not only as the teller of parables and the healer of the sick but also as the fulfilment of great and magnificent purposes and promises of God that go back many centuries.
Jesus is demonstrated to be the true son of Abraham and the true fulfilment of the promises to David. The Old Testament is full of future hope. It looks beyond itself to an expected end. God was understood to be working towards His desired goal for the earth and for humanity.
God is demonstrated to be no minor local deity or purely national God so that even at the time of His making covenant with Israel He points out, ‘The whole earth is mine’ (Exod. 19:5).
The purpose of the plagues and exodus were to show that, ‘There is no one like me in all the earth’ (Exod. 9:14). Taking us back to the story of Abraham, Christopher Wright points out that Israel existed only because of God’s desire to redeem people from every nation. He goes on to point out that for New Testament writers such as Paul, the very gospel itself began not with Jesus but with Abraham.
As Christopher Wright says, ‘The Messiah was the completion of all that Israel had been put in the world for – i.e. God’s self-revelation and His work of human redemption. For this reason, Jesus shares in the uniqueness of Israel. What God had been doing through no other nation He now completed through no other person than the Messiah Jesus…As the Messiah of Israel he could be the Saviour of the world.’